Updated: Apr 24
For weeks leading up to Easter, many Christ-followers, especially pastors, have been meditating on Christ's countdown to Calvary, where He suffered and died. Pastors and teachers have taught countless messages and Bible studies describing the multifaceted wonders of our Lord’s determination to die as the perfect sacrifice for us.
Then, the sun rises on Easter Sunday, and the floodgates of anticipation open with tears, shouts, songs, and joyful exclamation, “He is risen!” followed by, “He is risen indeed!”
Along with feeling a sense of awe, those who invested themselves in preparing to celebrate the resurrection should have peace and satisfaction knowing our Lord is alive and seated at the Father’s right hand.
But being the mortals that we are, we should not be surprised that we feel what I could describe as the “Post-Easter Daze.” Rather than peace and joy, leaders and church members may even feel somewhat disillusioned after climbing down from the indescribable view of the resurrection and returning to day-to-day living in our fallen world.
After praying and giving everything we have to prepare ourselves and others to honor Christ with every fiber of our being, it is only natural that we are physically, mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually spent (2 Cor. 12:15). Many of us may feel fatigued and even emotionally down after such a climb to the summit of worship.
Unless we pause to rest in Jesus and allow ourselves to recharge, we may find ourselves vulnerable to temptations and the attacks of our Enemy. Adrian Rogers has said, “Fatigue can make a coward out of any man.”
Please do not misunderstand.
I am not suggesting we respond to the Son of God's death and resurrection by taking a nap (John 9:4). Jesus Christ came to live within His followers (Jn. 14:15-23) and brought the same resurrection power to work mightily within us Who worked within Him (Eph. 1:18-20). Just moments before His ascension, our Lord promised His followers would be His witnesses to the uttermost parts of the world after the Holy Spirit came upon us (Acts 1:4-8).
Instead, I think we should at least be aware that our fatigue and the fickleness of people could dim the glory of the resurrection in our lives.
If we believe Jesus died and rose to pay for our sin, it stands to reason church attendance would increase rather than decrease after Easter.
Rather than increasing, church attendance typically lowers the week following Easter. Seeing little or no change in the lives of those we love can be very discouraging to pastors and faithful members who pray and work each week to reach people with the gospel.
Ironically, our disappointment at the lack of response to the resurrection may cause us to lose our joy and act as though there has not been a resurrection!
Our feelings and fickle people do not change the truth and power of the resurrection of Christ. Even if no one attends the Sunday after Easter, we should choose to be a part of the wave of worship transversing the globe and around the Throne of Grace in heaven (Hab. 3:17-19).
So, if you or someone you know is tired and maybe a little discouraged following Easter, I would like to offer a few thoughts that I hope will encourage you and your people:
We will be alright. Our fatigue and feelings are normal. While you and I are in our mortal bodies, we should not be surprised that periods of physical and emotional stress have consequences. If our Lord, in His sinless humanity, grew tired, hungry, and needed time for renewal, so will His followers, living with a fallen nature in mortal bodies (2 Cor. 4:16-18).
If no one appreciates our sacrifice, it does not matter. We don’t do what we do for others anyway (2 Cor. 3:1). The applause of men is not our goal (2 Cor. 9:25; Phil. 3:14). If we are living sacrifices whose joy is just doing our duty and bringing a smile to our Savior, we should not expect the applause of men and must beware of measuring our success by the opinions of others (Ro. 12:1-2).
We know better than to trust our emotions. We may be grateful for having tender hearts towards God and concern for others, but we know our emotions can easily lie to us. So we are wary of extreme highs or lows because they will pass. It is normal to feel numb or even a little down after a stressful season of ministry. We get our joy from knowing our Father is Sovereign and in control. We choose by faith to abandon our worries and rest in Him.
We allow God’s Spirit to rule and bear His fruit in our lives. While our spiritual disciplines train us for godliness, we choose to depend on Him to produce His fruit (1 Tim. 4:8; Gal. 5:22-23). Our best efforts cannot compare with what the Spirit of God can do through His surrendered servants (Eph. 5:18).
We know God deserves the best of our total selves: mind, body, and spirit (Mk. 12:30). So, we will resist the temptation to depend on food to fill our “emotional tank” or allow our mood to dictate how much we exercise. We know that regular, vigorous exercise cleanses us of stress, reduces the likelihood of health issues, and makes us feel and think better (1 Tim 4:8a; 1 Cor. 3:17).
We know that following Christ is more of a marathon than a sprint. We choose to walk in step with His Spirit and pace ourselves as we run the race He has set for us (Heb. 12:1).
We choose to give ourselves the same grace as God would have us extend to others (2 Cor. 1:2; 9:8).
May we run the race with patience and be faithful as we await His return.
Grace and peace,